Writer: Jay Faerber
Artists: Mahmud A. Asrar, Ron Riley (colors)
Publisher: Image Comics
Dynamo 5 is a Jay Faerber comic. No, I am not giving out a known piece of information (already listed in the creator credits). What I am stating is that anyone who has read Faerber’s work on Noble Causes will not only recognize the similarity in the storytelling but also be able to find common character depiction "threads" between Noble Causes and Dynamo5. While Noble Causes presents Gaia as the matriarch and unofficial leader (and PR-manager) of the Nobles, Dynamo5 has Madeline Warner, the widow of Captain Dynamo. Similarly for the kids, although to be fair, both to their creators and the readers, Scatterbrain, Slingshot, Scrap, Visionary and Myriad have enough individuality to stand up on their own as their own characters, and all of that in just one issue.
Readers of Noble Causes would have also come across the now expired Captain Dynamo, the superhero super-horny father of these five hereto unsuspecting, well, children. Even in his later years the daddy dearest’s Ol’ Dynamo never let go of a chance of getting some, or at least trying to. He even tried to get it on with Liz Noble, wife of the Noble’s youngest son, Race (Ref. Noble Causes - Extended Family v1 #2). It was the same "go getter" attitude that finally did the Captain in. It is in the aftermath of his funeral that his widow, Madeline, comes to know about his repeated cheating. Following up on the names and addresses provided in his little black book, she also came to know that in his playing around not only did Dynamo bed quite a few women, he also fathered children through them. Five to be exact.
This brings us to the five of Dynamo5: Hector Chang, a High School student from Vancouver, British Columbia, Olivia Lewis, a junior at Georgetown University, Spencer Bridges, a, uh, something from, ahem, somewhere, Bridget Flynn, an NYU Film School graduate living in Hollywood (and working as a ticket clerk in a rundown movie theatre) and lastly, Gage Reinhart, another High School student, this time from Eastbridge, Texas. Two girls and three boys. A geek, a super-achiever, a playa, a wannabe actress and a jock. It seems Dynamo really got all the bases covered. Heck, he even checked off the race list, along with the demographic and social background ones, with Hector being of East-Asian origin, Olivia and Spencer African and Bridget and Gage Caucasian. Way to go Cappy! Really putting the "W" in a Worldly family to along with the F-ing of yore.
Moving on to the individual powers, unlocked by a burst of radiation (similar to the one that gave Dynamo his powers), the five each have one of the five powers that their father had. Hector takes on the codename Visionary and has laser vision. Olivia becomes Slingshot with the power of flight. Next is Spencer a.k.a. Myriad, the shape-shifter of the group. This leaves Bridget (Scarp) with super-strength and Gage (Scatterbrain) with telepathy.
As fresh, fast paced and action packed as Faerber’s writing is, it is more than matched by Mahmud Asrar’s pencils and Ron Riley’s colors. I especially liked the costume color scheme and designs. Well maybe except for Slingshot’s Banshee-Nightwing inspired "wings." Then again, I guess if not this it would have been a cape and given the general design across the group I would much rather have this than that.
Conclusion: As I stated before, whether it be in the fight scenes or just simple character interactions, there is a life to Dynamo5 that is present both in the writing and the art. In addition, I left out commenting on the ending because that is something I don’t want to spoil. Go read the issue for that. Really, go read it.
You can find more reviews by Bruce Logan at www.xcave.net
What did you think of this book?
Have your say at the Line of Fire Forum!